LS15 - Week 10 notes
LS15 - Week 10 notes Life Science 15
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This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by AK315 on Thursday March 10, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Life Science 15 at University of California - Los Angeles taught by Professor Phelan in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 37 views. For similar materials see Life: Concepts and Issues in Biology at University of California - Los Angeles.
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Date Created: 03/10/16
Week 10 Industrial societies - life in an alien environment • We don’t have the capacity to produce our own: ◦ Food ◦ Medicine ◦ Shoes ◦ Houses ◦ Sanitation systems • Today’s environment is alien What is culture? • Transmission of info via extra-cellular means. Basically, it’s information that is not biological but we get from like our environment and people around us. • Culture can free us from biology! • Why does culture reduce the usefulness of our instincts? ◦ Because of culture and technology we can no longer trust our instincts ▪ Food distribution and production can get us anything we want ▪ Birth control reduces cuckoldry risk ▪ Day care reduces need for parental investment ▪ It’s hard to be a teenager (Taboos on sex etc. curb a primal instinct) ▪ Firearms reduce need for strength ▪ Armies can ﬁght our battles ▪ Money reduces our reliance on others • Our environment is very alien to our brains. Evolution ﬁne-tuned us for a diﬀerent world. • Constrained learning; ◦ For animals, drink water > noise and lights ﬂash > electric shock was given. Animals learned to stop drinking water when noise and lights went oﬀ ◦ For animals, drink water > weird taste > nausea induced by x-rays ◦ Learning languages - we can learn better when we are younger! It’s kind of prepared learning but it is inﬂuenced by time also • Prepared learning, illuminates the leash of biology reigning in culture’s ability to shape our behavior The fundamental reproductive equation • Sex = pregnancy = babies = maternal child care = loss of female economic opportunity = loss of female political power ◦ Now, sex does NOT have to = pregnancy. Thanks to culture, we’ve developed contraception (condoms etc) to prevent this. ◦ Pregnancy does NOT have = babies. Abortion prevents this (medical technology). ◦ Babies does NOT have to = maternal care. Baby bottles etc. removes the need for that too ◦ Maternal care does NOT have to = loss of female economic opportunity. Day care centers + paid maternity leave. ◦ loss of female economic opportunity does NOT = loss of political power. • Culture can free us from our biological constraints and make equality possible and make good outcomes much more likely.
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